Bankruptcy Lawyer: When to Hire One

If you are having difficulties with finances and are considering debt consolidation or bankruptcy, you may also be considering hiring a bankruptcy lawyer. Of course for those who are in a financial rut or on the verge of financial ruin, coming up with extra funds to pay a bankruptcy lawyer can be downright impossible. Despite the shortage of money, it is often best to still consider at least consulting with a bankruptcy lawyer before you begin the process.

The main purpose of a bankruptcy lawyer is to help an individual or business go through the legal procedures for filing bankruptcy. Lawyers are meant to help deal with creditors, meet with the court systems to set up payment plans or repayment programs, gather together and liquidate assets, and fill out and file necessary paperwork. Just as a realtor would be the knowledgeable party in the selling or buying of a home, a bankruptcy lawyer will be that knowledgeable source during a bankruptcy proceeding.

In most state and county legal systems, you are not required to have a bankruptcy lawyer for the legal proceedings. This does not always mean it is wise to do without a bankruptcy lawyer, though, as most specialize in just financial law. Unless the court case would be easily cut and dry or you already know a great deal about the legal system in this case, a bankruptcy lawyer can help from becoming overwhelmed with the legalities of the system.

From the start, a good bankruptcy lawyer should help you to determine which chapter of bankruptcy to file and will offer sound reasons why. If you don’t know anything about the different chapters, this is an excellent reason to begin consulting a lawyer. Many lawyers will even offer a free consultation where you can simply claim the advice and move on to take care of the remainder of the case yourself. Often, though, lawyers will charge by visit or by activity, such as appearing at the courthouse or filing paperwork.

Keep in mind that not all bankruptcy lawyers specialize in the same type of cases, so it is important to find a lawyer who can help you with the type of financial difficulties you are having. Some bankruptcy lawyers work specifically with businesses, while others work solely with individuals. Having a good experience with your lawyer will undoubtedly include finding someone knowledgeable in the areas you need expertise.

Another excellent reason to consider hiring a bankruptcy lawyer is simply to have someone knowledgeable who can help guide you through the paperwork process. In bankruptcy cases the paperwork is the most overwhelming aspect and more often than not, bankruptcy lawyers will actually fill out and file all of the paperwork for you. This takes away the burden of dealing with paperwork in the middle of a financially and emotionally straining time.

If you decide that hiring a bankruptcy lawyer is right for you, ask the local court house for names of lawyers in the area. You may also want to consider asking trusted friends or family advice for finding bankruptcy lawyers. If all else fails, take advantage of technology and research cases in your area to see which bankruptcy lawyers most often represent individuals or businesses. This is a great way to determine who the best lawyers are for your financial needs.

Responsibilities of a Bankruptcy Lawyer

Many organizations will only consider filing for bankruptcy as a last resort. They will struggle very hard to pay their creditors. Yet, sometimes bankruptcy is inevitable because of the stringent economic times being experienced. Recessions have resulted in the declaration of bankruptcy by many and this has led to an increase in the demand for bankruptcy lawyer services. Bankruptcy is defined as being unable to offset your debts. It is fully recognized by the law and some countries even have bankruptcy laws put in place to regulate the way debtors and creditors relate when a debtor has filed for bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy will give the debtor the option of clearing his or her debt fully or partially. This will also depend on the financial state of the debtor. The creditor, however, can choose to file a bankruptcy petition seeking the debtor to pay part of the debt or the entire amount. Once this happens, the debtor will need the services of a bankruptcy lawyer. Understanding the complexities involved in bankruptcy law might be difficult for a layman and this is precisely why the service of a professional lawyer who has specialized in bankruptcy is required. There are certain responsibilities and duties that the bankruptcy lawyer will perform once you have found the right one to represent you.

Professional responsibility: Every lawyer has a special responsibility to his or her client, regardless of who the client is, and it is no different with a bankruptcy lawyer. The lawyer should ensure that the client receives treatment that is fair during the entire legal process. This is an ethical responsibility that a lawyer accepts when taking the oath. This is the single most important aspect of a bankruptcy lawyer and failure to fulfill this responsibility will lead to losing the case.

Discretion: Another responsibility that is important and should be practiced by a good bankruptcy lawyer is discretion. The lawyer should know how to behave, what action to take and what to disclose about the case. The case details and conversations between client and lawyer should always be confidential. This will enhance the client-attorney relationship and prevent any important information from falling into the wrong hands.

Responsibility related to finances: The commonality in bankruptcy cases is the management of huge volumes of financial documents and statements. It is the work of the bankruptcy lawyer to analyze and evaluate the financial documents and determine the assets of the organization that has filed for bankruptcy. This must be identified early because liquidation might be necessary and the lawyer needs to be prepared for that option.

Devotion: The lawyer should be devoted to the bankruptcy case that he or she is working on. Devotion to the case and the client will ensure that the lawyer pushes for the rights of the client. Lack of devotion will ultimately lead to the case being lost due to infringement of the clients rights.

Legal counsel: One of the most important responsibilities that the lawyer handling the bankruptcy case has to his or her client is to offer legal advice. It is the duty of the bankruptcy lawyer to inform clients on how to conduct themselves at all times and provide expert legal advice about the case. This will make clients better prepared for any questions or information that may arise as a result of the case. All in all, the case will run much smoother for the client.

The lawyer should be able to tell you what options you have and recommend the best one for you. This activity is quite difficult, especially for lawyers who are not experienced, so choosing an experienced bankruptcy lawyer will benefit you enormously.

File Bankruptcy Under Supervision of a Bankruptcy Lawyer

Bankruptcy is a section in federal law that governs those laws and regulations pertaining to people who end up in so much debt that they cannot recover from it. This section of the federal law is designed to enable such people to recover from their debt and make a fresh start. This is done by giving them a longer time period margin in which they have to pay back all their debt and by even reducing the total debt amount by a certain percentage. All bankruptcy laws are distinguished from each other based on the chapters of the Bankruptcy Code in which they appear. There are a total of five chapters for all types of debtors and out of these five chapters three pertain to individuals. These chapters are Liquidation (chapter 7), Reorganization (chapter 11), and Reorganization (chapter 13).

Whether you are an individual or a business facing liens, lawsuits, repossession, wage garnishment, or foreclosure you should definitely hire a bankruptcy lawyer to help you solve your financial problems the efficient way. Finding a good bankruptcy lawyer is the first and most important step in this whole process. There are multiple resources that you can consult to find the perfect bankruptcy lawyer for you but always ensure that the lawyer you hire is from your area rather than any other area. This is because the laws and regulations differ from one state to another and only those lawyers who have been practicing bankruptcy cases in your area will be able to handle your case better. Therefore stick to the list of bankruptcy lawyers working in your state.

You can try getting a list of all bankruptcy lawyers working in your state from the yellow pages or through an online directory. Once you have tracked down a list run some preliminary background check to see which ones are the most reputed ones. The ones with most experience should be your first priority. Contact them and arrange for a free consultation session. If the lawyer does not offer a free consultation session then you should switch to someone else. These lawyers already charge a pretty high fee and since you are filing for bankruptcy it’s obvious that you do not have enough cash to just throw around. Therefore avoid the most costly lawyers and stick to the ones offering free consultation.

When attending your free consultation session always notice the lawyer’s habits. Lawyers who are keen about timings and are more organized can be trustworthy and reliable. Another important factor to look out for is how comfortable you feel with that person. Since you will be spending a great deal of time with that person in the future you need to ensure that the two of you click, understand each other, and you feel comfortable with him or her. Only then can you work well together. Always check out at least four or five bankruptcy lawyers before finally settling on one. Carefully planning all these things will help you find a good bankruptcy lawyer who will successfully take you through your case.

One last thing you should analyze is the size of the firm your bankruptcy lawyer is working for. Here the opinion of experts differs. Some people prefer hiring lawyers who work for really large and famous law firms whereas some people prefer hiring lawyers working for smaller firms. The problem often associated with big law firms is that they usually have so many cases lined up that they fail to give you the personal attention you need. On the other hand smaller firms have fewer cases and dedicate much of their time to it to ensure a strong name from winning those cases.